A good portion of the enjoyment of a pleasant date is in the anticipation. We have a date for Friday night and we think about it throughout the week. We think about what we will wear, where we’ll go, what we’ll eat, what we’ll say and do. We plan on how long it will take to get ready and whether we’ll need to leave work a few minutes early.
When we enter a relationship, we stop dating. We see each other, of course, much more than we did in our dating days. At the onset of living together, we still have that sense of anticipation before seeing that beloved face. We hurry home to the most important person in our little world.
After years together, we become used to the routine. We may enjoy seeing our significant other as much as ever but the exhilarating anticipation has become normalized. We have become habituated to the lives together we have created.
We need to start dating again. We need to create special events that we can look forward to with keen relish. Thinks about when you last took a vacation or a pleasure trip. The days and weeks leading up to it were times of mounting excitement and planning; we saw it in our mind’s eye long before it took place. After it was over, we enjoyed remembering the things we had seen and done, secretly smiling at the fun we’d had and the free feelings we had experienced.
The same spirit-boosting results can be obtained, to a lesser degree but with more frequency, in planning small events with our partner.
A lunch or dinner date at a special place can be something we look forward to for a long happy week. A date to go bowling, or dancing, or golfing, can be set up several days in advance. Plan on when you are going to see that special movie or attend a concert.
An event simply needs to be special, it doesn’t have to be expensive. Plan a visit to the fast food chain where you had your first date. Take visits to local hotels to see which ones have the best free hors d’oevres at happy hour. Meet at a museum or an art gallery for a stroll together.
Send your honey a special invitation by card or e-mail. Advise that no “regrets” will be acceptable. Prepare for the date as carefully as if it was your first meeting and be on your best behavior as you were in that delicious dance of courtship.
When your friends question why you are in such a good mood lately, just smile and tell them that your life is so special that there’s no time left to be grumpy.